Mark and Tia El have been producing a candy buzz ever since they introduced their baked items to the Studying Terminal Market.
The couple are the co-owners of Candy T’s Bakery which serves up a wide range of candy potato baked items corresponding to candy potato pie, candy potato pound cake and candy potato cheesecake.
Prospects have been flocking to their day cart on the market since they arrange store final October.
“From a enterprise standpoint it’s really nice,” mentioned Tia El, a 47-year-old South Philadelphia native.
“It’s allowed us to fulfill so many alternative folks from completely different nationalities from all the world over. It’s been a blessing being right here.”
Candy T’s is believed to be the primary Black-owned bakery out there’s historical past.
“It means an entire lot,” Tia El mentioned, as she mirrored on being market’s first African American bakery proprietor.
“We’re very humble and grateful. Each time I sit and give it some thought, tears roll down my eyes. I’m nonetheless making an attempt to take this all in. We get a lot help and optimistic suggestions from everybody. It’s extraordinarily overwhelming.”
Mark El takes delight in realizing that he and his spouse are making historical past on the market
“We grew to become trailblazers,” mentioned the 55-year-old North Philadelphia native.
“That is the primary time ever that there was a Black-owned bakery within the historical past of this market in 128 years.”
Tia El began baking pies years in the past and household and associates finally inspired her to pursue enterprise possession. Her candy potato pies are impressed by her grandmother’s recipe. Tia El mentioned she began including different substances and she or he put her personal twist on it, like a graham cracker crust.
“Once I was making them for my household and associates all people at all times mentioned that they’re so good it is best to go into enterprise,” she mentioned.
“So once we discovered the chance we simply went for it and we’ve been blessed ever since we opened up.”
The Els first opened Candy T’s Bakery in South Philadelphia in 2014. The couple closed their brick and mortar location in 2018 to pursue enterprise in new neighborhoods by a meals truck. Nonetheless, Tia El mentioned they at all times aspired to have a spot out there. They’ve been making use of for a industrial location for a couple of yr.
Candy T’s Bakery has been slightly profitable since becoming a member of Studying Terminal Market by the Day Cart program in October 2020. The enterprise is at the moment solely open on Fridays and Saturdays.
“We promote out each single day since we’ve been right here,” Tia El mentioned.
She mentioned that their deal with specializing in candy potato pie helps set them aside.
“In our tradition, folks normally have the pie across the holidays, Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Years,” she mentioned.
“However we provide candy potato pie all yr lengthy, in order that’s distinction between us and quite a lot of different bakeries.”
Now they’re gearing as much as transfer right into a everlasting house mid-April on the intersection of Avenues C and 12 out there. Candy T’s will transfer into the house previously occupied by Metropolitan Bakery which now sells its full line of product by The Pennsylvania Common Retailer.
The bakery will function 5 days per week, Tuesday by Saturday, and develop to be open each day by fall.
Candy T’s serves up desserts and pies by the slice, as effectively three-inch private pies. Complete desserts and pies will likely be accessible for buy in-store or on-line by Mercato. The bakery additionally provides 4 signature drinks together with strawberry iced tea, strawberry lemonade, common lemonade and iced tea.
“Tia and Mark convey a contemporary, new idea that the Market has by no means seen earlier than and we’re so excited to share these flavors with our marketgoers,” mentioned Annie Allman, CEO and common supervisor of the Studying Terminal Market.